Saturday, August 13, 2011

TCM - Summer Under the Stars 2011

In this blog, I tend to gravitate towards Exploitation and Film Noir, but I am trying to broaden my horizons by being more diverse in the movies I watch. Black and white films no longer bother me as I really enjoy the strong contrast. However, it's usually the dialogue of classic films that keeps me distanced. Luckily, Turner Classic Movies is a great resource to help me get past the dated lingo. TCM is truly a great television station that has opened up my aperture by showing some awesome films that I would have never taken the chance to sit down and watch.

Besides being commercial free and having historical vignettes between films, TCM has some great reoccurring features that I really enjoy:
  • TCM Underground: Airing late on Friday nights (or early on Saturday mornings), this time frame presents a double feature showcasing some strange but awesome cult classics. In the past, I have reviewed some of these films.
  • The Essentials: Introduced by Robert Osborne and Alec Baldwin, this Saturday night feature presents a must-see film and concludes with a post-movie discussion. Also check out The Essentials Jr, currently being introduced by SNL's Bill Hader.
  • Silent Sunday Nights: Silently shown every Sunday night before I go to bed, this is the perfect way to end your weekend before waking up to the beginning of the long work week.
TCM also has an annual event called Summer Under the Stars. For each day during the month of August, TCM presents 24 hours of films featuring a particular movie star. You've probably heard of these Hollywood legends, but have never seen any of their work. TCM makes it very accessible to get familiar with these artists by spotlighting some of their most spectacular performances. Some of the stars showcased this month are Carey Grant, Lucille Ball, Marlon Brando, and Lon Chaney.

I decided to blog about this month long event because my namesake Jimmy Stewart (myself named James Stewart Hardin) is being featured in today's Summer Under the Stars. Although I've seen very little of his work (It's a Wonderful Life and Rear Window), TCM proved my parents didn't do too bad of a job naming me. I haven't really analyzed any of the films shown today, but The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance will definitely be a film I will review and can say is one of my all-time favorites. From what I've seen, I really enjoy Jimmy Stewart as he plays the likable and good willed man and makes me proud to be named after him. I plan to watch more of his work, so stay tuned as I may blog on a particular Hitchcock thriller in the very near future.

So before this month ends, be sure to check out TCM's Summer Under the Stars film schedule at:

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